Absolutely! Ladybugs in the garden are great at controlling the several bad bugs: aphids, spider mites, and scale. An adult ladybug can eat 50 aphids a day and produce up to 1,500 babies. Take that aphids!
How to Release
To maximize the benefits of releasing ladybugs in your yard, provide them with a good habitat to live in. The best time to release them is in the evening when it’s cooler and after hosing down foliage where aphid activity has been spotted. Also, releasing them in multiple small batches around your yard and not all on one plant will make sure they don’t compete too much.
Your Natural Protectors
Since Ladybugs are a natural protectant, the best success comes by using them as part of an overall approach to your garden health. Give them time to work. Don’t expect the immediate results that come from a contact insecticide. If your problem is severe you can also use organic insecticides (we suggest Captain Jack’s Insecticidal Super Soap) in a targeted way. Make sure not to spray ladybugs directly!
Happy Ladybug Community
To keep your ladybug community thriving plant some pollinating plants for when insect meals are scarce. Provide a water source as well, birdbaths and sprinkler systems do the trick. Some excellent plants for ladybugs and other beneficial insects include: coreopsis (tickseed), cosmos, dill, evening primrose, fennel, parsley, sweet alyssum, and yarrow.
When your ladybugs are thriving, they’ll be multiplying as well! Be on the lookout for their rather fierce-some-looking young, who resemble black and orange alligators (see image below). They tend to hang out closer to the stem of plants. Keep a look out for them and enjoy watching them devour aphids.
If, despite your good care, you find that the ladybugs have moved on from your yard, don’t despair! They’re probably close, hard at work in a yard that needed their help. Think of it as community improvement!